The controversial new cameras set to catch out drivers

NSW is set to introduce cameras to detect drivers using mobile phones.

In a statement, the state government said during a six-month pilot of the program tech company Acusensus checked 8.5 million vehicles and found more than 100,000 drivers using their phones illegally.

Minister for Roads Andrew Constance said there was “strong” support from the community to stop illegal mobile phone use behind the wheel.

A stock image of a man is pictured using his mobile phone to look at a map while driving. NSW will be rolling out cameras to catch drivers on their mobile phones.
A man is pictured using his mobile phone to look at a map while driving.

The program will start with a three-month period where anyone caught using a phone while driving will receive a warning letter.

A Transport NSW spokesperson confirmed to Yahoo News Australia the program would launch at the end this year.

After this period is over, drivers caught doing the wrong thing will be slapped with a $344 fine and five demerit points.

The program will include fixed cameras and mobile trailer-mounted versions.

Following the initial launch, there are plans to expand it to perform 135 million vehicle checks annually by 2023.

A driver photographed driving while speaking on a mobile phone.
A driver pictured driving and using a phone during a trial of the cameras. The full program will be rolled out later this year. Source: Transport NSW

NSW Police Traffic and Highway Patrol Commander Assistant Commissioner Michael Corboy said more than 16,500 people had been caught driving while using a mobile phone this year.

“When you drive while using a phone, your attention is not on the road, on other cars, pedestrians, or on other dangers and it poses a risk to everyone who uses the road,” Asst Comm Corboy said.

“There is simply no excuse for it.”

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